10 Best Books to Read About Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a fascinating tropical country in Central America. It is a great source of inspiration for both local and foreign writers. Here is the list of the most compelling books about Costa Rica that allow you to dive into adventures through the eyes of the authors.

1.  Monkeys Are Made of Chocolate: Exotic and Unseen Costa Rica by Jack Ewing

It is not a secret that Costa Rica has one of the most diverse flora and fauna on the planet. In this book, Jack Ewing shares his observations about marvels of the country for a noble cause ⁠— spread environmental awareness. Indeed, thoughtful and shrewd stories can help you redefine your attitude to the world around you and become more environmentally conscientious.

2.  The Best Short Stories of Quince Duncan by Quince Duncan

As the first Afro-Caribbean writer, Quince Duncan is an important personality in Costa Rican literature. His short stories and works of other black authors contributed to the introduction of the discourse of racial identity. This collection provides a historical background and current issues that people of African descent face in Costa Rica. For example, such stories as “A Letter,” “A Gift for Grandma,” and “Two Roads” will show you the customs and cultural values of local people.

3.  A Beach House to Die For by K.C. Ames

Entertaining and offbeat, this book can become your perfect travel companion. The author describes a recently divorced woman, Dana Kirkpatrick, who inherits a house in the tropical paradise of Costa Rica. She expected to face the challenges of living in a completely new environment. Yet, she never imagined being a murder suspect. Add a bit of mystery, local cuisine, and a cute stray cat, and it becomes a delightful reading about Costa Rica.

4.  See Before You Die: Costa Rica by J.E. Leigh

If you dream about a vacation in an exotic country like Costa Rica, this book will keep you interested. J.E. Leigh offers extremely vivid descriptions of locations and authentic characters. You will be able to look at a dynamic jungle journey through the eyes of a travel writer and photographer. The spirit of a small Costa Rican village will make the story even more entertaining.

5.  Costa Rica Curious: Redefining the American Dream by Greg Seymour

Have you ever thought about leaving everything you have and escaping to a distant exotic location? Greg Seymour describes the experience of how he reevaluated his life and traveled around Costa Rica. The book illustrates his introduction to Costa Rican culture in anecdotes and adventures of the characters. The readers can use it as a guide to change their lives. After reading this book, you will definitely be tempted to move to or at least visit Costa Rica.

6.  The Windward Road: Adventures of a Naturalist on Remote Caribbean Shores by Archie Carr

Written by an ecologist and conservationist, Archie Carr, this book initiated the conservation of sea turtles on the international level. By reading The Windward Road, you can explore the remote locations of Costa Rica with its picturesque islands and coasts. The author’s descriptive writing helps you to imagine the expedition with vivid details and sensory imagery. The book is full of adventures, humor, and mysteries of nature.

7.  The Ticos: Culture and Social Change in Costa Rica by Mavis Hiltunen Biesanz, Richard Biesanz, and Karen Zubris Biesanz

Our next suggestion is for those who have a particular interest in the culture and social system of the country. It is a substantial work that presents the authors’ first-hand observations in a form similar to a textbook. You can learn about local history, economy, healthcare, government, and family institutes. The book provides insights into the strong cultural identity of the Ticos or, in other words, the native Costa Ricans.

8.  Costa Rica: A Traveler’s Literary Companion by Barbara Ras

This is a well-balanced collection of 26 short stories. It gathers works of the best Costa Rican writers to introduce you to the spirit of the country and the national identity of its people. Do not expect it to be a travel guide that describes local attractions. Instead, it does much more. The book shows you the values of Costa Ricans and their cultural kaleidoscope.

9.  Two Weeks in Costa Rica by Matthew Houde and Jennifer Turnbull

Two Weeks in Costa Rica is a collection of experiences that combines the elements of a good travel guide and an engaging narrative. The book shows you what Pura Vida is with its open, carefree, and optimistic spirit. Vivid descriptions and lively stories allow you to experience adventures together with the authors. Enlightening and witty, this book will be helpful to anyone interested in Costa Rica.

10. Moon Living Abroad Costa Rica by Erin Van Rheenen

The author focuses on various aspects of the vibrant culture of Costa Rica and overviews some practical information, such as finances, employment, politics, and the environment. It can be helpful for those who plan to move to Costa Rica as well as for people interested in the country. Erin Van Rheenen provides a comprehensive profile of the country that will allow you to explore the harmony and tranquility of a tropical paradise.

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